February 1, 2009
You're probably wondering which version you should download. They are not equivalent in terms of resolution. Because they use different codecs, file size is not always a good indicator of quality. I downloaded all three versions of part one in order to compare them.
Here is the video information from mplayer:
TheCorporation-Movie-Part1.avi: VIDEO: [DX50] 640x368 24bpp 30.000 fps
TheCorporation-Movie-Part1.ogv: VIDEO: [theo] 522x300 24bpp 30.000 fps
TheCorporation-Movie-Part1_512kb.mp4: VIDEO: [avc1] 416x240 24bpp 30.000 fps
The avi version has the largest native resolution which should show up best on your screen. It also happens to be the largest file. Mplayer (Debian build) plays this movie fine. It's acceptable quality when viewed in full screen mode on a 22" LCD.
I can't believe there are no real reviews for this documentary. It has reportedly been downloaded over half a million times through various sources and there are no reviews here?
I enjoy watching documentaries and this is an excellent one. If you're expecting a mediator between two sides debating, this is not your type of documentary. This is a highly visual documentary which should appeal to a broader audience. This includes interviews with Harvard business professors and CEOs of large corporations. While parts of it will anger you, it's not all gloom and doom. The story of CEO Ray Anderson is a sign that some change is possible. I don't want to ruin the story, but this film wouldn't be the same without his story.
This film has a deep concern over how corporations use their power and influence. I think one of the goals of this film is to get people to question whether we should continue with the way things are done. Can we move in a different direction so businesses are more accountable to society?
While any documentary will show some signs of bias, I thought this was more or less even in its execution. If there was a point that an interviewer made such as on sweatshops, they had a section with a business man who would try to defend that position. I found some of the opposing arguments weak, but I didn't feel that the people behind the film sought out easy targets. It's hard for anyone to argue in favor of sweatshops that employ children.
Here are some of the central themes:
* A history of corporations through the modern incantation. It focused on how corporations are typically only interested in money even at the expense of society.
* Marketing and manipulation that corporations use. There was a section on marketers targeting children through their study of nagging and another on inventing a virtue of being a consumer. If you liked this section, you will probably enjoy Noam Chomsky's "Manufacturing Consent" film (also here at archive.org).
* Expansion of corporations into new areas including water privatization. This section also included patenting genes in humans. Unlike other areas, I don't think they covered this area in depth enough. There are a lot of issues involving patents, trademarks, and copyrights that weren't exposed.
* Collusion between governments and corporations.
One of the URLs mentioned in the film is multinational monitor which tracks corporate fines: http://www.multinationalmonitor.org/
Here are a few of the books mentioned: "The Ecology of Commerce" by Paul Hawken, "Profits with Principles" by Ira Jackson (appears in the film), "Spooked: Espionage in Corporate America" by Marc Berry (appears in the film), and "IBM and the Holocaust" by Edwin Black (appears in the film).
A poignant quote for me was when Richard Grossman talked about the origins of corporations: "In both law and the culture, the corporation was considered a subordinate entity that was a gift from the people in order to serve the public good." Can you believe this all started with such humble and honest beginnings? Everyone should watch this because we're all affected. Unless you follow this topic closely, you're bound to learn something new.
April 3, 2008
TiP TOP DOC
TIP TOP doc
If you like this film, you will love